Cardiff Archers winners offer advice to other young athletes

​06/01/2015

​Hani (left) with Jennifer (right)

​The winners of the Cardiff Archers Sportsman and Sportswomen of the Year have spoken about what it takes to succeed in athletics following their wins at the club's recent awards ceremony.

Jennifer Sani and Hani Radman were both awarded at the ceremony held by the club for their sporting achievements over the last year. 

Both started in athletics thanks to the programmes run by First Campus- a partnership between higher education institutions, further education colleges and schools in South East Wales.

Hani, from Willows High School, who specialises in sprint and hurdles, first became involved in athletics aged 10 when he attended the First Campus after school Junior Athletics club, receiving weekly coaching sessions  at Cardiff Metropolitan University. 

 It was at this club that Hani's talent was spotted and he has since gone on to become one of the club's most promising young athletes, receiving yearly sponsorship from First Campus to attend.

The 14-year-old from Adamsdown said: "Being involved in athletics has really helped build my confidence and has also enabled me to make friends.

"To succeed in athletics you have to focus but also have fun at the same time otherwise it isn't enjoyable. I would advise any others looking to become involved in athletics to work hard, persevere and listen to their coaches.

"Although I found it difficult at first but my coaches helped build my confidence. If it wasn't for First Campus I wouldn't have been spotted and the support I have received since has been great. I would love to become professional and my dream is to compete in the Olympics one day."

Jennifer, who specialises in javelin and discus, started training at Cardiff Metropolitan University's National Indoor Athletics Centre five years ago and has since won medals including first and third in the Welsh Division.

She is currently the seventh best thrower for her age in Wales and has broken several of her school's previous records.

The 14-year-old Mary Immaculate High School pupil said: "A lot of hard work and determination has helped me to progress in athletics as well as support from my coaches who have shown a lot of confidence in me.

"I actually started off doing tennis but found that I preferred athletics following my involvement with First Campus. It's great to have found something that I enjoy doing so much and I've also made a lot of friends through athletics; we all support and encourage each other which is great. 

 "I would love to become a heptathlete when I'm older and will continue to train hard to help me do so. My advice to others would be to never give up and to keep pushing themselves to be better."

Established in 2012, the Cardiff Archers Athletics Club now has more than 600 athletes training each week aged 5+, with over 250 competitive members, aged nine and above and is based at National Indoor Athletics Centre at Cardiff Metropolitan University.